Universities Explore Health Reform Impact
Not long after the historic health care reform bill narrowly passed the House and was signed into law by President Barack Obama before moving on to the Senate, a common question began to surface: “Now what?” Individuals and employers are searching for summary information and struggling to decipher the measure to determine how it might directly impact them. One challenge is that the legislation provides a framework, but many details and procedures still need to be worked out.
“Universities, including NMU, are reviewing the bill and working with insurance providers to determine what the potential effects are and how they would be handled,” said Gavin Leach (Finance and Administration). Full Story
Student Loan Reform Approved by House
Tucked inside the health care bill passed by the House is a reform measure that would overhaul the student loan industry. The bill would eliminate federal subsidies paid to private lenders and banks that grant loans, replacing the “middle man” with direct loans from the government. The Congressional Budget Office reports the shift would generate $60 billion in savings over the next decade. Most of that money would be used to beef up the Pell Grant program. Smaller amounts would be used to reduce the federal deficit and support community colleges and historically black colleges or universities and implement caps on loan payments.
Universities Help with Census
Because the U.S. Census Bureau tracks students where they attend college, regardless of permanent address, local census workers are relying heavily on university housing staffs and campus directory information to ensure an accurate 2010 count. Full Story
U.P. 1910 Census Data on CD
Data from the 1910 census of the Upper Peninsula is now available on a searchable CD, with information listed by county, political subdivision, ethnic group and occupation. The project was 26 years in the making. Full Story
LPN Admission Suspended
NMU will suspend admission to its Licensed Practical Nursing (LPN) certificate program starting in 2011- 12. But currently enrolled students and another cohort finishing their prerequisites will have an opportunity to complete their studies.
In developing a 10 percent budget reduction plan, as requested of all university departments last year, the School of Nursing determined that it could reach the goal by not replacing three professors scheduled to retire over the next two years. Remaining faculty would remain intact. But because admissions numbers in one of the programs would be impacted by the looming retirements, the School of Nursing reviewed its strategic plan that prioritized programs according to national need, student demand and the availability of similar programs at other Upper Peninsula institutions. Full Story
NMU Complies with Textbook Provisions
Effective July 1, universities must implement provisions of the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 designed to increase transparency and accountability related to textbook costs.
The NMU Bookstore has already begun to link its online textbook inventory system with online registration so students will have access to the most up-to-date information when they sign up for classes. Full Story
Administrative Transition Announced
Terry Seethoff (Arts and Sciences) has accepted a two-year appointment as associate provost, effective June 1. He will succeed Cindy Prosen (Academic Affairs), who is retiring at the end of the academic year. Seethoff will lead the effort to develop a long-term staffing recommendation for the provost's office, particularly in the areas of graduate education, research and continuing education. He will also help to address administrative needs such as accreditation, assessment, scholarship and contract maintenance. Full Story
Cousteau and Infidel Author to Speak at NMU
Alexandra Cousteau, a globally recognized advocate on water quality and policy, and Ayaan Hirsi Ali, a human rights activist and best-selling author of Infidel, will give presentations next week at Northern Michigan University.
Cousteau will speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 30, in the University Center Great Lakes Rooms. Hirsi Ali's presentation is at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 31, in the same location. Full Story
'Taste of Home' Dinner April 13
Dining Services will pick the top recipes submitted by students and parents during Family Weekend last fall and prepare them for a "Taste of Home" dinner starting at 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 13, in the Marketplace. NMU employees are welcome to partake for $8.50. Greg Minner (Dining Services) said he will send a letter next week to those whose recipes were selected. Each will receive an invitation to the dinner and two tickets, along with an NMU apron and a recipe card of their dish adapted for 5,000 servings.
"We did this for the first time last year," he added. "It's a fun way to get the parents involved. I remember one student who called his mom from the food court and told her about the long line of people waiting to try her dish. She wrote to me after that she wished she would have attended. Some parents really get into this. We weren't able to get the aprons out right away last year and some were adamant about checking in because they wanted to make sure they got one. Now they're in stock and ready to go."